On Monday, Denver Post sportswriter Natalie Meisler, age sixty, tweeted that she was "almost half thru Bolder Boulder." But the day before, she was reportedly running for a different reason.
On Sunday, according to the Boulder Police Department, she raced off after getting into a dispute over a Whole Foods parking space that ended with her keying a truck with a family inside.
A police report about the incident states that Robbie Knight was waiting for a space at the market while behind the wheel of his 2011 silver Toyota Tacoma pickup -- and even though he had his turn signal on, a green Honda Civic piloted by Meisler pulled in ahead of him. He told cops he tapped on his horn twice to express his displeasure, prompting Meisler to flail her arms and mouth an obscenity.
She did, however, pull out of the space, allowing Knight to park there. His wife then went to the store to shop, while he stayed in the truck with his kids -- something that may not have been apparent to folks outside due to his tinted windows.
Shortly thereafter, Knight said he heard a grinding sound and looked to see Meisler outside his vehicle, her hands moving back and forth. After dismounting and surveying the damage to his Tacoma's exterior, he asked, "What the (expletive) are you doing?" He claimed she replied, "You've just assaulted me. It's your word against mine."
For his part, Knight insisted that he didn't lay a hand on Meisler, although he admitted to being "very upset."
Whatever the case, he called 911 -- and police soon spotted Meisler running nearby. She subsequently told officers that Knight had yelled profanities at her and grabbed her upper arm for reasons she didn't know. Quizzed further, she recalled driving into a parking spot near a big truck, but didn't elaborate on anything else that may have happened. She also asked for a police escort back to her car at Whole Foods, presumably as protection against Knight, who she accused of harassing and stalking her. But since Knight had already split, the cops told her she was on her own.
The result of this back-and-forth was a summons for criminal mischief -- a misdemeanor at this point, although if the damage to the truck exceeds $500, it could be bumped up to a felony.
To its credit, the Denver Post covered the story -- an example of putting good journalism ahead of collegial concerns. Meisler didn't comment for that item or the more detailed 7News piece that preceded it. (Note: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that the Post article came first.)
By the way, the most recent article written by Meisler was published on May 19. No doubt she hopes the next one will feature her name in the byline, not in the text.
More from our Media archive: "Ed Schultz can tell David Sirota to go to hell, but can't call Laura Ingraham a right-wing slut."
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.